Coming off arguably their best win of the season and one of the most uplifting moments this team has seen in at least a few seasons, the Mets looked to keep the good feelings going on Monday night and carry the energy from a wild weekend at Citi Field into this pivotal series with the Cardinals, and maintain the offensive rhythm that saw them put up 24 runs in 3 games against the Yankees.
They did none of that.
The Mets came out as flat as possible on Monday, mustering only six hits and failing to score a run against Adam Wainwright or the Cardinals bullpen as they were shutout for a twelfth time this season. They went 0-for-7 with RISP and left nine runners on base. They got destroyed by a score of 7-0 in a game they really needed to win.
The Mets had a little something going in the first inning when Jonathan Villar led off with a single. Francisco Lindor then flied and Michael Conforto grounded out, but then Wainwright issued two-out walks to both Pete Alonso and Javier Báez to load the bases for Jeff McNeil.
McNeil struck out on three pitches, with the third strike being a patented Wainwright curveball to strand the bases loaded. Sometimes, baseball has a sense of humor.
That was pretty much it for the Mets’ offense against Wainwright. They’d get two runners on with two outs in the fifth, but couldn’t push anything across. The 40-year-old Wainwright handled the Mets, who had no answer for his curveball, or any of his other pitches for that matter. Wainwright came into the game with a career 4.95 ERA against the Mets, the second-highest among all teams the 15-year veteran had faced more than two times. He lowered that quite a bit tonight.
On the mound, Rich Hill was spinning a curveball of his own and looked sharp in the first, but faltered in the second inning. Dylan Carlson opened the scoring by ripping a double into right-center field to give the Cardinals a 1-0 lead. Paul Goldschmidt added an RBI single in the third, and then a solo homer in the 5th to put the Cardinals up 3-0.
Hill was done after his usual five innings, after giving up his usual three runs. He was on a decent roll lately, hurling 12 innings of one-run ball across his last two starts, but this was the 5th time in 10 Mets starts that Hill had tossed exactly 5.0 innings and given up between 2-4 runs.
The Mets’ next best chance on offense came in the 8th, when they were facing Alex Reyes, the shaky former closer for the Cardinals. Lindor led the inning off with a walk, and then Conforto followed with a single that pushed Lindor to third. The Mets had runners at the corners with nobody out.
Then Alonso struck out, Báez struck out, and McNeil struck out. Inning over.
The Mets sent Yennsy Díaz to the mound in the ninth to try to hold the Cardinals at three runs, and he didn’t exactly do that. Díaz got knocked around for four runs on five hits, and Trevor Williams had to come in and clean up the mess. By the time the inning had concluded, the Cardinals led 7-0 and the game was effectively over. At that point, a rainy and wet Citi Field was comprised pretty much just Cardinals fans chanting for Yadier Molina. It was pretty miserable.
Not that it mattered, but Kodi Whitley came in for the 9th and he also struck out the side. The final six Mets all struck out in this game. The Mets fell back down under .500 to 72-73. The Mets came into the month needing to win basically every game, but they haven’t won two games in a row since their 7-game winning streak in the first week of September. They fell to 3.5 games out of the Wild Card and 5.5 out of the division.
-illar of the day
Both -illars went 1-for-4. There is no winner for this game, as there were no winners of anything on the Mets.
Win Probability Added
Big Mets winner: Francisco Lindor, +6.1% WPA
Big Mets loser: Jeff McNeil, -16.1% WPA
Mets pitchers: -9.9% WPA
Mets hitters: -40.1% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Michael Conforto hits a single in the eighth inning, +12% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Dylan Carlos hits an RBI double in the second inning, -10.5% WPA